Monday, August 17, 2015

Week 8 - Enrique's Baptism

So we had our first baptism with Enrique on Saturday. Enrique was the man who kind of stutters and I can hardly understand anything of what he says. But his baptism went very well. And like 5 minutes before, Elder Lowry asked if I could give a short talk on the gift of the Holy Ghost. So I was able to talk for about a minute or two on what the gift of the Holy Ghost is, and I thought it went decently well. The next day, we confirmed him a member of the church and all went well. We just hope he continues to go to church because he is moving this week, and right after sacrament meeting, he had to go work, so hopefully everything works out for him.

I also learned why we don't drink the water. No, I did not drink it and find out. It was when we were filling the font with water and what looked like little green leaves were coming out of the faucet. I then asked Elder Lowry what that was, and he told me that it was mold from within the pipes. Pretty nasty, huh. All the mold leaves just end up all over the bottom of the font. And the on going joke here is that those are the persons sins that got washed away.

Our ward is small. I'm not sure how many members there are, but there are usually like 47 people in attendence. The members are very good to us. We get comida everyday except Pday. And what they feed us varies, and it is hard to describe because I don't know what anything is called. But the past few meals we have had gorditas.

And Dad…your former mission companion, Adam Elder Lowry's Dad!!! His Dad confirmed it because he wrote Elder Lowry back saying he had a companion in Montreal named Paul Snyder from Thousand Oaks and he was very musically talented. What are the chances?!!
I'm glad you shared your experiences about your struggles with the language because trying to understanding everyone is so hard and tiring. But this week I have improved so much. About 50 percent of the time, I know exactly what people are saying, and then the other half, I just try to make an educated guess, and it works out pretty well. I usually have at least one part in the lesson that I get to share besides just bearing my testimony. But I am alot more confident in talking with people now, however, I still don't like to lead conversations. I can pretty much say anything I want, but it is with the limited words that I know, so it is a very simplified idea of what I am trying to say.
So on viernes (Friday), we had √≠nter cambios (exchanges) with the zone leaders because Enrique needed to be interviewed for baptism. So, I went with Elder Adams to his area in Del Valle, and Elder Sican stayed here with Elder Lowry. Now the zone leaders have a house that they live in. The bottom floor is bigger than our entire apartment and they have a whole second floor too. So from there, we started our day, and we taught a lesson with a recent convert, and then for like the rest of the day, we could not find anyone. All of our appointments fell through. Now their area is a pueblo, so it is very poor. We had to walk very far to get to this one part of their area and the houses are literaly like shacks. There is a concrete floor, but the concrete wasn´t set right. So it is like someone just poured concrete on the floor and then it hardened over all the little bumps and things so the floor is not flat. Also it just looks like wood is built around the concrete and then there are just a bunch of metal sheets that make up the walls. Also, all the houses here, even the nicer ones have no insulation, so it is literally like the people are living in an oven. But after we had no luck and sweating more than I have sweat here so far, we saw a family sitting on their porch, and we decided to talk to them. They then gave us their chairs and told us to sit as they went in to get more chairs. We were then able to teach them part of the first lesson on why there are so many churches and how they can discover which one is true through prayer. They are a really great family, and I wish that I could continue teaching them. 
Then we had an appointment with this man that the zone leaders met the other day. They weren´t even planning on contacting him, but the man asked them if they were thirsty and if he could bring them some water. So we had a lesson with him, and he is just great. He has two little kids and when we asked him what he really wants in this life, he said, he wants to be an example for his kids and be a great husband to his wife. Perfect missionary answer. He also has a strong testimony of prayer, because it was through prayer that he was able to stop drinking. And to bring it all together, he accepted our invation to be baptized. Again I am really sad that I don't get to keep teaching him, but I am thankful for the experience.

We then returned home after acquiring some dogs. One of the members in that area owns a hot dog stand, so alot of the time he gives the missionaries free dogs. The hot dogs in Mexico are AMAZING!!! They are always wrapped in bacon and are just topped with so much magic it is pretty much indescribable.

When we got home, I just started sweating so much because the house was an oven. We finished planning for the day and in just that half hour, my shirt was drenched! It was nasty! I then thought how the heck am I goining to sleep in this heat and being so sweaty. But then when I opened the door to the bedroom, I was pleased to find that the room was freezing cold! There was an AC in the tiny room! 

Well, that's all. It's sad that Scott and Dawna are moving. I know everyone is going to miss them. And sounds like things are busy with all the before school activities. I love hearing everything that is going on and thanks for all the pictures you send. They always make me smile. :) 

Elder Snyder

The Mexican dog
The sisters decorated my daily planner.
Our kitchen